Braising is a combination of browning and simmering, usually in that order. But my braised leek recipe is a little different. The leeks are simmered first, then browned under the broiler with lemon, breadcrumbs, and freshly grated Parmesan cheese.
So, I had to call this recipe either "Backward
Braised Leeks" or "Leeks with a Real Wow Factor for the
Dinner Party." Forward thinker that I am, I opted for the more memorable name.
6 to 8 medium-sized leeks
Juice of 1 lemon
Salt and pepper to taste
1/2 cup unseasoned breadcrumbs or panko crumbs, toasted
3 to 4 tablespoons Parmesan cheese, freshly grated
3 tablespoons butter, divided
Trim and discard the dark green, leafy portions from the leeks leaving only the white and pale green portions. Trim the raffia-looking roots from the leeks, if you like, leaving the white bulb ends intact. Next, clean the leeks. (See the box "How to Clean Leeks.")
the leeks in a large, shallow saucepan, in a single layer. Add water to just cover.
Bring the water to a low boil and simmer the leeks until tender, about
10 minutes. Drain and pat dry with paper towels.
Place the cooked leeks on a buttered baking sheet, fanning them slightly, and squeeze a little lemon juice over them. Salt and pepper them to taste, then sprinkle the leeks with the bread crumbs and Parmesan cheese. Last, dot them with butter that has been cut into small pieces.
Broil the prepared leeks until the cheese melts, about 2 to 4 minutes and serve.
The braised leek recipe serves 6 happy guests.